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Child safety seat checkpoint set for today

November 19, 1998

A free child safety seat checkpoint will be held today from 3-6 p.m. at Children's Village of Washington County, 1546 Mount Aetna Road.

The checkpoint is designed to help parents understand how their safety seat should be installed in their vehicle for maximum protection for the child.

In addition to improper installation, there are problems with how children are restrained in the safety seats, experts say.

Children 12 and under shouldn't ride in the front passenger seat of vehicles with air bags, authorities said.

The safest place in any vehicle is in the middle of the back seat.

* Infants under 1 year old and weighing less than 20 pounds should be in rear-facing car seats in the back seat.

* A child younger than 4 years, regardless of weight, and children who weigh 40 pounds or less, regardless of age, must be in a federally approved safety seat.

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* Children between 40 and 80 pounds should be in booster seats with seat belt low over hips and upper thighs and snug over shoulders.

* High back booster seats are necessary if a child's ears are above the car's seat and knees don't bend to the floor.

* Children weighing more than 80 pounds and over 8 years old usually can sit correctly in lap/shoulder belts.

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